Gender Mainstreaming

Although ZERO has always been gender-sensitive in its mission, vision and employment practices, no substantive policy existed on genderising the organization. This short-coming was addressed during 2001-2002 when ZERO received funding from CIDA-GESP to mainstream gender in the organisation.

The project  addressed the issue of mainstreaming gender into the current strategic plan and current projects of ZERO, giving staff full appreciation of the gender elements of the strategic plan and projects which were being  implemented through the development of aids/tools to ensure that gender is fully taken into account in future strategic planning processes and in project implementation. The tools developed out of this process were fully internalised and extended to close working partners and the governance of ZERO, the Regional Board.

This was characterized by holding several staff training workshops on mainstreaming gender. The inaugural workshop was the Gender awareness raising training workshop, which was followed by the Gender Analytical Skills Training Workshop. The purpose was basically to expose ZERO staff and partners to gender concepts in a bid to create gender awareness as well as equipping partners with skills to integrate gender during formulation implementation and evaluation of programmes and projects. This culminated in the engenderisation of the ZERO’s mission statement as well as its objectives.

http://192.168.1.116:81/zerowebsiteoriginal/images/women_training.jpgZERO understands that gender mainstreaming means focusing on both women and men and their relationships with each other, land and land resources, and working in a global perspective that allows for and appreciates regional diversity.

ZERO is well aware that mainstreaming gender means creating an enabling working environment that will attract and retain gender sensitive staff. ZERO also recognizes the need to analyze and understand the differential roles and responsibilities, relationships, needs and visions for women and men as forming the basis of a gender inclusive development process. Gender equality is a fundamental and integral part of democracy and shall therefore be mainstreamed and promoted